Reductions in incident coronary heart disease risk above guideline physical activity levels in men

Atherosclerosis. 2010 Apr;209(2):524-7. doi: 10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2009.09.018. Epub 2009 Sep 16.


Background: One-half of Americans currently meet guideline physical activity levels. For these individuals, exceeding guideline levels may provide additional health benefits.

Methods: Incident physician-diagnosed myocardial infarction and angina, revascularization procedures (CABG, PTCA), and ischemic heart disease deaths during 7.7-year follow-up were compared to baseline usual distance run in 35,402 male runners.

Results: Men reported 467 incident CHD and the National Death Index identified an additional 54 ischemic heart disease deaths. Per km/day run, the men's risks declined 5% for fatal and nonfatal CHD (P=0.001), nonfatal CHD (P=0.0008), and revascularization procedures (P=0.002). Their risks for nonfatal myocardial infarctions and angina declined 7% (P=0.02) and 10% (P=0.003), respectively. Compared to <3km/day run (upper limit guideline level), >9km/day run produced risks 65% lower for angina (P=0.008), 29% lower for nonfatal CHD (P=0.04), and 26% lower for fatal and nonfatal CHD (P=0.06).

Conclusions: Exceeding guideline physical activity levels produce important CHD-risk reductions.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Angina Pectoris / prevention & control
  • Cohort Studies
  • Coronary Disease / etiology*
  • Coronary Disease / mortality
  • Coronary Disease / prevention & control
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Guidelines as Topic
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Myocardial Infarction / prevention & control
  • Risk
  • Risk Assessment
  • Running*
  • United States / epidemiology